Villarreal vs. Steaua Bukurest / Europa League – Due to the composition of the group and the strength of the Spanish team, Villarreal should have objectively had no problem to win placement in the sixteenth finals and secured the first place even before the last round, however, is not so and now this team is under the imperative of victory, while a low-scoring draw also suits them in some options. Steaua is giving its best and they had high hopes for the second place, but now all came down to this match in which they need a win or possibly a draw with a lot of goals, if Zurich loses in Turkey. Villarreal is not in the best shape in the championship lately, but have three games without a win, with two defeats, which cost them a fall to sixth place. Steaua is a leader in the Romanian championship, but they have only one point more than their first companion. Their first mutual duel ended with 1-1, and they also met in this competition in 2005, when it was 0-0 in Bucharest, while Villarreal celebrated with 2-0 at El Madrigal. Begins: 08.12.2016. – 17:00 CET
Villarreal has gambled a little bit with their reputation in the first five rounds of Europa League and the effect is one victory which is absolutely unacceptable. We should also mention that Villarreal’s European path started in the Champions League qualifiers, where they were eliminated with two losses by Monaco and then continued with their weak games and only Zurich lost to them at home. With three draws, they were also defeated by Osmanlispor at El Madrigal, they have the imperative of victory, in order not to depend on the results of other matches in Turkey. If Zurich loses, Villarreal could play a draw 1-1, and that without goals, but we still expect that they will not calculate too much.
They are not in the best shape in La Liga, where they are three rounds without a win and where they were defeated in Bilbao, and completely surprisingly at home by Alaves, while they played a draw with Leganes in the last round (0-0). They did not score in these three duels, and that is the biggest problem, although only their striker Soldado is out of action for a long time. Coach Escriba is combining the composition in each new game, but considering that this one is very important, we expect him to perform with his strongest available forces.
Probable lineups Villarreal: Asenjo – Mario, Musacchio, V.Ruiz, J.Costa – Trigueros, J.dos Santos, R.Soriano, B.Soriano – Bakambu, Pato
Steaua is still in the running for a place in the knockout phase, but they objective have the hardest match, because they are playing away against the big favourite of this group for whom we said that has previously secure the first place. That hosting is not a problem, as it is the fact that they have to win or play a draw at the very best, but with two goals scored, and the result from Turkey also has to coincide. Steaua also played Champions League qualifiers, however, they failed to pass last obstacle, Manchester City, and that was the end of their road.
They started Europa League with a win over Osmanlispor, and then they played three draws and a victory in the last round over the Turkish team, which left them in the game. They are the leaders in the championship, but they have only one point more than their first companion and lately their results are not very commendable. Last weekend they celebrated against Panduri, however, before that there was a draw and two defeats, which means they are not in shape. Midfielder Philip and striker Tanase are out of action, and given that they do not have a lot of room for tactics, we expect them not to be too defensive.
Probable lineups Steaua Bukurest: Nita – Tamas, Abro, Tosca, Momcilovic – Pintilii, Bourceanu – Enache, Boldrin, Amorim – Popa
Villarreal vs. Steaua Bukurest PICK
Since Villarreal is already in this situation, then they should not leave anything to chance in their deciding game and we believe in their complete domination, and a certain victory. Steaua does not have that strength to parry such a strong rival.
Pick: Asian Handicap -1.5 Villarreal
Odds: 2.06 at betvictor (down to 1.95 can be played)